Mount McKinley or Denali – one of Seven Summits list.
Notable features :
Mount McKinley has a larger bulk and rise than Mount Everest. Even though the summit of Everest is about 9,000 feet (2,700 m) higher as measured from sea level, its base sits on the Tibetan Plateau at about 17,000 feet (5,200 m), giving it a real vertical rise of little more than 12,000 feet (3,700 m). The base of Mount McKinley is roughly a 2,000-foot plateau, giving it an actual rise of 18,000 feet (5,500 m).
The mountain is also characterized by extremely cold weather. A thermometer left exposed at an elevation of 15,000 feet on Mount McKinley over 19 years recorded a temperature of −100°F (−73.3°C) at some point during its exposure. There is also an unusually severe risk of altitude illness for climbers, due to not only its high elevation but also its high latitude. At the equator, a mountain as high as Mount McKinley would have 47% as much oxygen available on its summit as there is at sea level, but because of its latitude, the pressure on the summit of McKinley is even lower.
Climbing history :
The first recorded attempt to climb Mount McKinley was by Judge James Wickersham in 1903, via the Peters
Glacier and the North Face, now known as the Wickersham Wall. This route has tremendous avalanche danger and was not successfully climbed until 1963.
Famed explorer Dr. Frederick Cook claimed the first ascent of the mountain in 1906. His claim was regarded with some suspicion from the start, but was also widely believed. It was later proved fraudulent, with some crucial evidence provided by Bradford Washburn when he was sketched on a lower peak.
In 1910, four locals (Tom Lloyd, Peter Anderson, Billy Taylor, and Charles McGonagall), known as the Sourdough expedition, attempted McKinley, despite a complete lack of climbing experience. They spent approximately three months on the mountain. However, their purported summit day was impressive: carrying a bag of doughnuts, a thermos of cocoa each and a 14-foot (4.2 m) spruce pole, two of them reached the North Summit, lower of the two, and erected the pole near the top. According to them, they took a total of 18 hours — a record that has yet to be breached (as of 2006). No one believed their success (partly due to false claims that they had cd climbed both summits) until the true first ascent, in 1913. In 1912, the Parker-Browne expedition nearly reached the summit, turning back within just a few hundred yards of it due to harsh weather. In fact, that probably saved their lives, as a powerful earthquake shattered the glacier they ascended hours after they safely left it.
The first ascent of the main summit of McKinley came on June 7, 1913 by a party led by Hudson Stuck. The first man to reach the summit was Walter Harper, an Alaska Native. Harry Karstens and Robert Tatum also made the summit. Tatum later commented, “The view from the top of Mount McKinley is like looking out the windows of Heaven!” They ascended the Muldrow Glacier route pioneered by the earlier expeditions, which is still often climbed today. Stuck confirmed, via binoculars, the presence of a large pole near the North Summit; this report confirmed the Sourdough ascent, and today it is widely believed that the Sourdoughs did succeed on the North Summit. However, the pole was never seen before or since, so there is still some doubt. Stuck also discovered that the Parker-Browne party were only about 200 feet (61 m) of elevation short of the true summit when they turned back.
See the timeline below for more important events in Mount McKinley’s climbing history.
The mountain is regularly climbed today, with just over 50% of the expeditions successful, although it is still a dangerous undertaking. By 2003, the mountain had claimed the lives of nearly 100 mountaineers. The vast majority of climbers use the West Buttress Route, pioneered in 1951 by Bradford Washburn, after an extensive aerial photographic analysis of the mountain. Climbers typically take two to four weeks to ascend the mountain.
- 1896-1902 Surveys by Robert Muldrow, George Eldridge, Alfred Brooks.
- 1903. First attempt, by Judge James Wickersham.
- 1906. Frederick Cook falsely claims the first ascent of McKinley.
- 1910. The Sourdoughs ascend the North Summit.
- 1912. The Parker-Browne attempt almost reaches the South Summit.
- 1913. First ascent by Hudson Stuck, Walter Harper, Harry Karstens, Robert Tatum.
- 1932. Second ascent, by Alfred Linley, Harry Liek, Grant Pearson, Erling Strom. (Both peaks were climbed.)
- 1947. Barbara Washburn becomes the first woman to reach the summit as her husband Bradford Washburn becomes the first to summit twice.
- 1951. First ascent of the West Buttress Route, led by Bradford Washburn.
- 1954. First ascent of the very long South Buttress Route.
- 1959. First ascent of the West Rib, now a popular, mildly technical route to the summit.
- 1961. First ascent of the Cassin Ridge, the best-known technical route on the mountain. This was a major landmark in Alaskan climbing.
- 1963. Two teams make first ascents of two different routes on the Wickersham Wall.
- 1967. First winter ascent, via the West Buttress, by Dave Johnston, Art Davidson, and Ray Genet.
- 1967. Seven members of Joe Wilcox’s twelve-man expedition perish in a storm near the summit. Up to this time, this was the third worst disaster in mountaineering history in terms of lives lost.
- 1970. First solo ascent by Naomi Uemura.
- 1984. Uemura returns to make the first winter solo ascent, but dies after summitting. Tono Križo, František Korl and Blažej Adam from the Slovak Mountaineering Association climb a very direct route to the summit, now known as the Slovak Route, on the south face of the mountain, to the right of the Cassin Ridge.
- 1988. First solo winter ascent with safe return, by Vern Tejas.
- 1990. Alaskan Norma Jean Saunders became the first woman to officially document a solo ascent of Mount McKinley. She climbed the West Buttress.
Mt. McKinley in July 2006
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McKinley, Mount McKinley, Mount Denali (6194 m n.p.m.) – najwyższy szczyt Ameryki Północnej, położony w górach Alaska (USA). McKinley zbudowany jest ze skał krystalicznych (głównie granitów i łupków krystalicznych). Jego masyw pokryty jest wiecznym śniegiem i lodowcami, największy z nich, o długości ok. 50 km to lodowiec Muldrow. Względem otaczających go dolin występuje u jego stoków jedna z największych deniwelacji na świecie – ponad 5 kilometrów.
Po raz pierwszy szczyt został zdobyty w 1913. Nazwa na cześć amerykańskiego prezydenta Williama McKinleya, “Denali” to tradycyjna indiańska nazwa góry. Obecnie masyw McKinleya objęty jest parkiem narodowym Denali. Z uwagi na fakt, że jest to najwyższy szczyt Ameryki Północnej, wchodzi on w skład tzw. Korony Ziemi.
** Zobacz : – Seven Summits
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